Every homeowner knows that window issues are inevitable. And while the thought of it might be daunting, many common problems can actually be handled with relative ease.
Let’s walk you through six common window issues that you can fix yourself when you know it’s time to call in the experts.
1. Foggy Windows: Condensation Between Panes
Condensation between window panes can be a sign of a broken seal, an issue prevalent in double-pane windows. You’ll often notice a foggy appearance that doesn’t clear up. To confirm this situation, clean your window thoroughly first.
If the foggy film persists, it’s likely condensation is trapped between the panes. Try dehumidifying the room or increasing ventilation to test if the problem clears up; if not, bringing in an expert might be necessary.
2. Addressing Chipped or Cracked Glass
Whether caused by a stray football or natural wear and tear, chipped or cracked glass can be a common window problem. First, examine the crack’s size. Small chips can often be repaired with a glass repair kit available at your local hardware store.
On the other hand, larger cracks will likely require a replacement. For those, it may be best to call in a professional glazier to ensure a seamless fit and proper installation.
3. Sealing Windows to Prevent Drafts
A drafty window can make a noticeable impact on your energy bills. It usually signifies an issue with the window seals. You can fix this by initially identifying the source of the draft using a candle.
Slowly move a lit candle around the window frames. If the flame flickers, you know where drafts are coming in. The solution then might be as simple as applying weather stripping or re-caulking around your windows to eliminate unwanted cold air sneaking inside.
4. Handling Broken Window Locks and Latches
You don’t have to be a pro to tackle broken window locks or latches. Generally, with just a screwdriver, you can typically fix this common problem.
If your lock doesn’t latch easily, it might simply be misaligned and often adjustable back to proper functioning.
However, if the lock or latch appears damaged beyond repair, replacing it yourself is also a manageable option, too. You’ll need to remove the old one carefully and take it with you when shopping for a replacement to ensure the new part fits perfectly.
5. Rescuing Stuck Windows
If your windows are hard to open or won’t stay up, there’s usually a simple fix. You can start to clean the window tracks, dust and dirt build-up can interfere with the window’s movement along these tracks.
If that doesn’t work, inspect the hardware. If it’s a double-hung window, check if the sash cords are intact or broken, which might require replacement.
On casement windows, you might need to adjust or replace hinges for them to operate smoothly again.
6. Replacing the Crank Handle
If you’ve ever tried to open a casement window and found that it’s stuck, the problem may lie with your crank handle. It’s a hardware component on some types of windows used to open and close the window by turning the handle, which operates via a geared mechanism.
Over time, the mechanism can wear out or become damaged, necessitating a replacement. But don’t panic! You can easily handle this task on your own.
Simply order a crank handle that matches your window model and replace it by following the manufacturer’s instructions or a trusted guide online. In no time, you’ll have your casement windows opening and closing smoothly.
Maintaining your windows doesn’t have to be daunting. With these tips, you can tackle common issues and enjoy the satisfaction of DIY home improvement. However, remember that when problems go beyond basic repairs, professional help is just a call away!
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